[EDIT : If you read the comments section you’ll find some comments from other bloggers that they were going to write similar posts on their writing process. They did, and you HAVE to read them, probably even more so than mine, LOL. Check out Oliver’s over at Literature and Libation; and Carney’s, Mike’s post on how he edit’s Carney’s posts and Mike’s post on HIS process over at The Beer Review. – Ed]
I’m coming up on my one year anniversary with this little blog, so I thought it would be fun to do a few posts on the blogging experience itself. I envy those who can effortlessly pound out a post in a very short time. I love to write but for me, the process sometimes seems to take a little more mental effort than would seem to be required for such a simple task. After all, I’m writing a beer blog not a series of books destined to be the next “Harry Potter”. Oh, I’ve had a few posts that have “written themselves”, and then I’ve had those that have been quite the little adventure in literary gymnastics. So with that in mind, I present an anatomy of a blog post per The Dogs of Beer.
7:00am – Leave for work. On the drive in, try to remember how long it’s been since my last post. Come to the conclusion that it’s probably time for another. Think about a subject. Like maybe how laborious the process of writing blog posts can be for me sometimes.
7:35am – Log into WordPress at work and verify that I haven’t posted in days. Check my stats. “Sigh” when I see that my page hits have been slowly going down since my last post.
7:40am – fire up the reader and see how the rest of my blogger community is doing. Lots of new posts – including 5 nice beer reviews from Beerproof. What are these people? Machines? I need to get it in gear.
8:00am to 11am – while mindlessly doing work I’m paid for, decide to go with the “blog post writing” topic and decide to do it “timeline” style. Start to formulate the post in my head.
11:15 – Lunch. Check the reader again. Check to see if anyone else has done a similar post recently. If no, start my new blog post; if yes, mentally return to 8:00am. I’m good, probably because everyone else can actually write a blog post without requiring the same mental effort that Einstein did to figure out that E = MC2.
11:45am – Spend 10 minutes on WordPress and Google trying to find out how to do superscripts in a blog post.
12:00pm – Back to work. Hit the lab computer once or twice between process lags to do some research.
2:15pm – Take a break from work and flesh out the post a little more. Put “xxxxxxxxxxx”s in all the places that I can’t think of the correct word or phrase I want. I’ll go back and fill those in later.
2:30pm – Back to work.
5:00pm – Get home and grab the computer before Tracey comes home and needs to play Mystery Manor on Facebook. Finish getting the post fully fleshed out while replacing the “xxxxxxxxxxx”s with the words or phrases I came up with on the ride home.
5:20pm – Get into the kitchen and look like I’ve been slaving feverishly since I got home when Tracey walks in the door.
5:45pm – During dinner, come up with a whole new angle that pulls the post together much better than what I’ve already written – like actually making this post about writing blog posts, about this post I’m writing.
6:30pm – Wonder how much longer Tracey’s going to be on the computer.
7:00pm – Watch an episode of Big Bang Theory for the 14th time. Still laugh.
7:30pm – With computer back in hand, delete 3/4 of my post and rearrange what’s left according to my new idea. Most writers would be annoyed at this, I’ve just sadly come to accept this as part of my “process.”
8:00pm – Finish post. Add links. Fill in last remaining “xxxxxxxxxxxx”
8:05pm – Read post all the way through. Fix crappily written sentences and obvious spelling mistakes.
8:10pm – Go through post to see if I can add any more humor to it. Yes, I actually do have to do this. Yes, I realize it often looks like I’ve forgotten this step.
8:30pm – Read the post in preview mode. Fix position of one of the photos and correct another spelling mistake.
8:32pm – Read post again. Rewrite a whole paragraph because I’ve managed to use the word “aroma” in it five times. Why doesn’t someone create a resource that allows you to look up similar meaning words so that you don’t have to use the same ones all the time?
8:35pm – Found an awesome picture of a sad looking dog with his head on a bar eying a beer. I have absolutely no need for it, but I must use it.
8:37pm – Decide to replace all the pictures in the post with “dog” related ones. Remember the Family Guy episode where Stewie is ragging on Brian’s novel. That might be humorous.
8:45pm – Still looking for a still of the scene from Family Guy. All the ones I’ve found are too small.
8:55pm – Really? No one has this?
9:05pm – Ug! I’m beginning to believe I’m going to have to draw this damn thing myself.
9:10pm – Ok. I give up, find the scene on YouTube and do my own screen grab with Hijack Pro. It ends up not being nearly as funny as I thought, but F’ it. After all that, I’m running with it.
9:15pm – Consider it finished. Close computer. Fling to side with a mixture of relief and mental exhaustion.
7:35am – Log into WordPress. Check reader and hope no one’s put up a post about my topic since the last time I checked – who would?. Read post one more time in preview mode. Change a couple of the words.
7:45am – After a couple of reads, decide it’s not going to get any better and publish.
[Edited to Add]:
7:46am – Curse under my breath as I realize I didn’t put the post in the proper category or add any tags.
7:47am – Edit post and add tags. Read it one more time. Fix another spelling mistake.
[Edited to Add]:
11:00am – Check stats to see if people are reading my post. Read post on blog site. Edit and fix the two spelling mistakes and reword a crappy sentence that I some how managed to miss on the previous 15 reads.
[Edited to Add]:
11:37am – Edit post again because one of my readers pointed out I forgot my tag line. [Thanks Carney!]
The next day :
7:35am – Start the whole process all over again.
Time for another……post.